When I began my PR Communications internship I was eager to put the skills I learned in school to good use. On the first day of my internship I was handed a training binder that outlined everything I would be doing along with a list of five clients. Although it was a bit overwhelming, I was ready for the challenge. I took a deep breath and with some help from my team, I knew everything would be okay.
An internship is considered ‘on the job training’ meaning I had an entire semester to do just that, be trained on what tasks an entry-level PR Communications professional would be expected to do – and the best part is, I had three amazing people to walk me through every step of the way. As an intern, your team is an essential part of everything you do. I’ve highlighted the top three benefits an intern receives when they are fortunate enough to work with a team.
- You get to be a sponge – Just as a sponge soaks up water, you get to soak up as much information as you possibly can! The best part about this is that your teammates have been exactly where you currently are at some point in their lives. They can offer insight into how to do your job more effectively, teach you tricks of the trade and even show you how to do things different from what you were taught in school. Your teammates know what’s been done before and can help guide you to success.
- You get to ask as many questions as humanly possible – Ask away! Your teammates will be happy you’re engaged and want to learn more. Whether you have a specific question about your roles and responsibilities or want to know if there’s a more efficient way to complete a task, your teammates will always help you out. I think back to my first day when I was handed that list of five different clients who fell under the Clean Tech/Bio Tech industry and I immediately started asking questions, lots of them. This was an industry I knew nothing about and I wanted to contribute as much as I could. Being in a team is also a great way to put your skills to good use, maybe you have a different way of doing something, or it’s something that hasn’t been thought of before, ask the important questions to find out – doing more than what you are required to do and wanting to contribute to other initiatives shows that you want to learn more.
- Communication & Teamwork – This is probably one of the best parts about being on a team as an intern. You have to constantly work towards communicating with your teammates, ensuring that everyone is always kept in the loop. This skill will definitely help you when you finish your internship. Communication and teamwork are essential skills in this industry and being able to let others know what you’re working on or when a task has completed is crucial. In addition, communication and teamwork allow you to collaborate with others. I believe this is probably the best part about working on a team. Brainstorming sessions are always better when more than one person is involved because you’re able to bounce ideas off of each other and collaborate to find the best solution for your client.
So the next time you’re looking for a PR Communications internship and are considering the many PR job descriptions in front of you, apply for a position where you can work with a team. I promise you, you will learn more from the people around you than you ever will by yourself.